Superbooth 21: ASM expands its Hydrasynth range with the Explorer & Deluxe versions, first look

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For Superbooth 21, ASM is expanding its powerful Hydrasynth range: Explorer a compact, battery-powered version, and Deluxe with a 16-voice bi-timbral engine and 73-key poly aftertouch keyboard.

One of the biggest synthesizer news about Superbooth 21 leaked this morning. Now it’s official with all the details.

Ashun Sound Machines (ASM) is expanding its Hydrasynth wave morphing Synthesizer range with two more versions. The Explorer is a compact, battery-operated version while the Deluxe gives you more poly aftertouch keys (6 octaves) and a bi-timbral engine with 16 digital voices in total. So 8 voices more than the regular Hydrasynths.

ASM Hydrasynth explorer deluxe

ASM Hydrasynth Explorer

Let’s start with the new little brother of the Hydrasynth, the Explorer. It offers the same 8-voice digital synth engine with powerful WaveScan oscillators, Mutator waveshaping. flexible dual filter section, 32-slot modulation matrix, and dual Insert and dual Master effects. Everything we loved from the big Hydra. The biggest difference is the form factor. The Hydrasynth Explorer is very compact and can be operated with batteries.

The keyboard is a big highlight for me. It includes mid-keys that support polyphonic aftertouch. A synthesizer for 600 € with a polyphonic aftertouch keyboard, yes that’s an announcement. How it feels you will be able to say more precisely on the Superbooth 21 next week or at KnobCon this weekend. The Explorer also comes with the same connectivity including CV/Gate for easy integration with equipment such as modular synthesizers.

The interface is also different. No hardware pitch/mod wheel, no ribbon slider but digital sliders on the left side. Plus, it has fewer knobs so less hands-on control. For me, it’s an interesting step that ASM is taking. They make the Hydrasynth available to more people. And I have to admit, I like the form fact. It fits perfectly in studios but also for jams on the go or on the couch.

ASM Hydrasynth Deluxe

And for musicians who need more than 8 voices, ASM also has something new for Superbooth 21. It’s called Hydrasynth Deluxe and is the big brother of the initial Hydra. It’s the new flagship synth from ASM that comes with a dual sound engine setup with each 8 voices. So you have 16 voices in total. Like the Explorer, it comes with the best-known wave morphing synth engine.

The highlight here is a new single and two multi modes. In single mode, you benefit from 16 voices of polyphony. In multi, you can split them into two completely separate 8 voice sound engines. It gives you keysplit which creates classic keyboard splitting between two patches, and dual which enables layering of two patches over the whole keyboard. A dedicated balance knob for direct adjustment of the mix between LOWER and UPPER parts of the MULTI patch is available on the panel, as well as separate stereo audio outputs and MIDI channel assignments for true bi-timbral operation.

The Deluxe version features a new 73-note Polytouch™ keybed that offers polyphonic aftertouch over each note, giving you the type of expressive control found only in certain vintage. Also on board is the beloved 4-octave ribbon controller with which you can play synth even more expressive.

Excellent new versions of the mighty Hydrasynth.  Many asked for 16 voices, now you have a version. Unfortunately it is not available as a firmware update but in a new device. Even if 16 voices are very exciting, I like the Explorer version very much. Well done.

ASM Hydrasynth Explorer will be available for 599€, Hydrasynth Deluxe for 1749€.

More information here: ASM

Available for pre-order at our partner

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Superbooth 21 News

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